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Making its way from the hills of Coorg to the plains of Bangalore, Storm 2014 goes one up on last year with three days of adventure, camping and over 45 performances

An added day at Storm 2014 gives music lovers much to look forward to. In addition to international acts and unexpected collaborations, this camp-out festival will also see a fifth stage called Plug N Play that will join the ranks alongside the World Music, Electronica, Singer-Songwriter and Camp Jam stages.

You can look forward to quirky collaborations between Shankar Mahadevan and Shankar Tucker, Lesle Lewis and the GenX, and Thermal and a Quarter and Ravi Kullor, for your share of contemporary music. Head to the World Music stage to catch Avial, The Raghu Dixit Project, Susheela Raman and Sparsh, among others or make your way to the Electronica stage to watch the likes of Nikhil Chinnapa & Rohit Barker (Dance Republic), Sanjay Dutta and Swing.

Representing the rest of the world, house and trance DJ Eddie Halliwell will take to the consoles as will Danny Rampling, a British house music DJ widely credited as one of the original founders of the UK rave and club scene. The boys from Belgium, Filterheadz and Ibiza regular Kid Creme are also part of the line up that brings together amateurs and professionals. “Musically and experientially, Storm 2014 will have a lot more to say, while keeping the initial vision of bringing the best of mainstream entertainment to beautiful natural environs,” shares Lavin Uthappa, festival director.

And this time, it will also feature the winners of the Voice of Storm 2014, a talent accreditation program by Shankar Mahadevan, who is also the event ambassador.

We catch up with some of the artistes as they get candid about the festival, their influences, experience, and their journey to 2014.

Culture2Box1Shankar Mahadevan

Your role in Storm 2014. 
It’s a great feeling to become the face of the festival which is purely for music. My role is to bring together new as well as known talent. Today’s amateur might become a professional tomorrow.

Collaborating with Shankar Tucker.
He is a really interesting artist. You can expect some film music and our interpretation of different forms of music. There’s going to be some classical stuff, some funky stuff. Shankar’s coming with his band and I am going to be collaborating with them. We’re going to be meeting on a certain date before the performance and then jam and rehearse.

Most anticipated performances.
I am looking forward to performances by Susheela Raman, Avial. I am also looking forward to and equally nervous about the performance by my kids – Siddharth and Shivam.

Culture3Box3Shankar Tucker
American clarinetist Shankar Tucker gets candid about his “fusion” genre, dream collaboration and love for Sheila ki Jawani.

What got you into Hindustani music?
As a devotee of Mata Amritanandamayi, I grew up playing bhajans at her programs. Then I discovered the “Remember Shakti” recordings and I was obsessed with all the musicians. I remember making a resolution that I wanted to study with Hariprasad Chaursia and that’s exactly what I did. He has taught me everything I know about Hindustani music.

Your choice of relatively low-key singers.
Most of the singers I have worked with are just my friends who sing really well! My first vocal production was with Vidya and Vandana Iyer. It was completely random and fun, and that’s where it all really took off.

On being ‘tricked’ into playing the clarinet.
As a kid, I wanted to play the saxophone. But my parents thought it would be too noisy. My grandfather had a clarinet and convinced me that if I learned it, I could easily switch to saxophone later. There is actually some truth in that approach, but once I got really into clarinet, I realised that I loved the instrument and didn’t want to switch.

Shankar Mahadevan and Storm.
It’s always been a dream of mine and I can’t believe it’s actually coming true! Expect a lot of improvisation on stage. It’s going to be all rooted in Indian classical music, but it will go into a lot of exciting different sounds and places with a mix of some of my original compositions and some of his hits.

Your influences and inspiration.
Hariprasad Chaursia, Zakir Hussain, Gotye, AR Rahman, Shakti, Coldplay, Radiohead, Foster the People, Bon Iver, Kanye West.

What is your guilty pleasure song?
Sheila Ki Jawani. I change up the lyrics as needed and sing (read: scream) them to my girlfriend, which gets on her nerves.

Culture4Box3Danny Rampling

Your performance at Storm.
A symphony of electronic, uplifting, big room music, played with passion.

Open-air musical festivals.
Festivals are great, huge crowds of music lovers enjoying bands and DJs in the open air. They are the rave scene’s legacy from the late 80s. Live acts like the Prodigy & Faithless became heroes of the festival scene.

What are you most looking forward to?
A great party in the heart lands of India, with many musical options.

Filterheadz

The brothers from Belgium take us behind the scenes of their energetic techno with big beats and rolling basses.Culture1Box1

From Leuven to the world map.
It was a bumpy road moving from house to progressive to techno. Great support from Sasha & Digweed, Carl Cox and other top names really helped.

Working with a sibling.
It’s great! We feel the music the same way, understand what needs to be done. We also enjoy challenging each other.

The story behind the name.
We started out French style, ‘Filter House’, like Daft Punk & Alex Gopher. Then Filters and now Filterheadz.

What is your guilty pleasure song?
Pop hits from the 60s, 70s and 80s.

The gig at Storm.
Expect a high energy set with loads of new Filterheadz material.

Three essential items you take on tour.
Music, books and podcasts.

The rest of 2014
Gigs, records, remixes and the launch of our label ‘Loopglow’.

Dream collaboration.
Gold Panda would be interesting.

At Corporate Leisure City, Sarjapura. Tickets (Rs 1,750 up) on stormfestivalindia.com

– Aakanksha Devi

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